Police identify man shot by officer in southwest Denver

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Posted at 3:12 PM, May 21, 2021
and last updated 2021-05-21 17:12:26-04

DENVER — Police said a man fatally shot by officers in southwest Denver on Wednesday night had ignored several commands by the officers and continued advancing toward them with a knife.

Officials identified the man as 52-year-old Raul Rosas-Zarose, in a news conference Friday.

News conference: Denver police provide update after an officer shot and killed a man Wednesday night

Commander Matt Clark said two officers had responded Wednesday evening to an area near South Federal Boulevard and West Harvard, where a man was reportedly cutting himself at the throat.

The officers found Rosas-Zarose kneeling near a tree, bleeding from his neck. After blocking traffic, the officers got out of their vehicle.

Rosas-Zarose then began walking toward the officers with the knife in his hand, ignoring repeated directions to stop, Clark said.

One officer then shot a less-lethal pepperball 10 times at Rosas-Zarose, but he kept walking toward the officers. The officer then deployed a Taser stun gun, but only one probe made contact with Rosas-Zarose.

When Rosas-Zarose continued to ignore the officers' commands, the officer fired her handgun five times at him, striking him, Clark said.

Rosas-Zarose was taken to a hospital, where he died.

Clark said the incident happened fast. The officers were on scene for a total of 33 seconds before the officer fired shots at Rosas-Zarose.

The officer has been placed on a modified-duty assignment while the shooting continues to be investigated.